A bill set to legalize medical cannabidiol oil was passed by the Virginia House of Delegates on Friday.
“It feels great. I was really truly not expecting unanimous,” Beth Collins said.
There many people like Collins who were surprised to see 98 Yes and zero no’s for HB 1251. The move will allow doctors in Virginia to prescribe a form of medical marijuana for people living with any condition or disease.
The oil is known as cannabidiol or THC-A. It contains extracts from marijuana that can help with pain and even help fight some cancer cells. Collins had to go through the odious four-year journey.
Collins daughter, Jennifer, is living with epilepsy and suffered severe seizures. Having tried all types of medication that either did not work or caused major side effects. “Rages, depression, suicidal thoughts,” Collins explained.
The problem with her daughter got so bad that Collins decided to split up their family and moved to Colorado where the cannabis oil Jennifer needed was legal. “We moved back and said, you know let’s change the law,” Collins told WUSA9. “Let’s stay in Virginia. Let her finish high school in Virginia.”
Jennifer is now 18-years-old and a high school senior.
The last four years have been very hectic for the family as they were busy lobbying and educating legislators in Richmond. Their efforts finally bore fruits as they managed to successful get a law passed that legalized the oil for epilepsy patients previously, however, you can’t get the medication in the state.
In 2017, there was so much success in securing future distribution and growing facilities in the state. The next step involves the state seeking proposals for five distribution and growing facilities.
If the law is passed, it will cover epilepsy patients and also give doctors the power to administer cannabidiol to anyone they believe should get it. “I’m not giving up until everybody has what they need,” Collins said. If the Senate passes the bill, patients and doctors will have to register with the state.